The Neighbors Upstairs

Every spring the crows give chase,
running a brazen hawk from their nest.
Cunning birds homesteading high up,
in the same spindly fir, dripping sap

sticky as sunburn, scrawny branches
snarled with dead vines. The wind
is taking its damn time helping them down.
Clenched beaks peck former treehouse

scrappy, remodeling creased paper
into origami. It feels safe, being surrounded
by ligatures whose sturdiness have been tested,
living in a nest woven out of the past. Ask anyone

if they’d rather be a hawk or a crow—
they’ll respond hawk without thinking. I promise
my daughter I will always be a crow,
but that’s just a story I tell myself.

Catching lift, the predator fails
to break them, hunting alone, arrogant
hope strung between marvelous wings. Relentless,
I continue to question why.

They take to the sky in pursuit of their foe,
wads of crinkling tin foil, wearing inky
tuxedos, shrieking coordinated tubas, playing
an aggressive and enduring polka. Smooth

so smooth, rose hips
through my fingers, liquified
spoons dripping syrup, coy,
before they vanish.

Andrea Krause (she/her) lives in Portland, Oregon. Her work is forthcoming in Moist Poetry Journal. She introverts inconspicuously on Twitter at @PNWPoetryFog.

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1 Response to The Neighbors Upstairs

  1. Christy says:

    Loved the imagery in this piece. And agree that I’d rather be a crow. 🙂

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